Consultation 2017

ATFE 34th Biennial Consultation
Saint Paul, MN
19-21 January 2017

Theme:  Across the Divides

The 34th Biennial Consultation of ATFE is scheduled for Thursday, January 19, 2017 through Saturday, January 21, 2017 at the Saint Paul Hotel in Saint Paul, Minnesota.  Our theme is “ACROSS THE DIVIDES.”  There are three continental divides in Minnesota and three rivers in the Twin Cities that divide.  This geographical contour provides a metaphor for the challenge of addressing our social context.  We confront many divides, such as those of culture, language, race, gender, privilege, income, clergy/laity, technology, ideology, and theological stance.  Our Consultation will encourage us to reflect together on ways to extend across these and other divides and strengthen the work we do. We will explore ways to help our students move across divides and embrace diversity in their places of ministry.

Plenary Speaker: C. Anthony Hunt

We are pleased to welcome Rev. Dr. C. Anthony Hunt Speakeras our plenary speaker.  Dr. Hunt is Professor of Systematic, Moral and Practical Theology at St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore, where he is a Permanent Dunning Distinguished Lecturer, in recognition of excellence in teaching and scholarship.  This is the highest distinction bestowed on a faculty member of the Ecumenical Institute.   He also teaches on the adjunct faculties at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC and United Theological Seminary in Dayton, OH, and is a faculty fellow at the Graduate Theological Foundation, in Mishawaka, IN.

Dr. Hunt will address us twice:

Plenary One – “Across the Divides – Dimensions and Dynamics of Diversity in the 21st Century” – What forms of diversity are most prevalent in the church and society today?  This plenary will address how these forms of diversity converge to offer new challenges and opportunities for doing ministry in the 21st Century.


Plenary Two – “Across the Divides -Theological Field Education amidst Difference and Change” – Given the dimensions and dynamics of diversity today, what are important considerations for theological field educators to help students navigate the various divides that may need to be crossed in preparing to do (and doing) ministry?  This plenary will outline various competencies that could be helpful to students ministering in diverse contexts.

With thanks to Dr. Hunt, here are links to the spoken texts and the slides of his presentations in St. Paul:

Across the Divides-Texts                   Across the Divides-Slides

Dr. Hunt is the author of six books, including – My Hope is Built: Essays, Sermons and Prayers on Religion and Race, vol. 2 (2011);  And Yet the Melody Lingers:  Essays, Sermons and Prayers on Religion and Race (2006); Blessed are the Peacemakers: A Theological Analysis of the Thought of Howard Thurman and Martin Luther King, Jr. (2005);  Upon the Rock: A Model for Ministry with Black Families (2002).

Dr. Hunt is Senior Pastor of Epworth Chapel United Methodist Church in Baltimore, MD, where he has served since 2011.  From 2008-2012, he served as the first District Superintendent of the Baltimore Metropolitan District in the Baltimore-Washington Conference and as Director of Hope for the City, the initiative to strengthen urban churches in Baltimore.  From 2004-2008, he was the Superintendent of the Baltimore-Harford District, and from 1998-2004, he served as the Executive Director of the Multi-Ethnic Center for Ministry of the Northeastern Jurisdiction, headquartered in Columbia, MD.

Dr. Hunt regularly supervises students for ministry in internships in his congregation, and he teaches field education colloquies for Wesley Theological Seminary both in the classroom and online environments.  He has led intercultural immersions on Civil Rights in Alabama and on Urban Ministry in Baltimore.  In his ministry and in his teaching, Dr. Hunt bridges many of the contexts of concern to us as field educators.

View from the St. Paul Hotel
View from the St. Paul Hotel

Venue: Saint Paul Hotel
350 Market Street
Saint Paul, MN 55102
View Map

The historic Saint Paul Hotel will host us for our consultation. The hotel provides a setting that is warm, elegant and intimate, well suited for much interaction and conversation. It also allows attendees to step right into the celebration of winter for which the city of St. Paul is famous.  Hotel Reservations must be made directly with the Saint Paul Hotel by calling 1-800-292-9292 or 651-292-9292 and asking for the 2017 Biennial Consultation rate, or by going to and using the block code, 170119UST. There is a drop-down menu under “SPECIAL RATES;” choose the option “GROUP/BLOCK” before entering the block code, and you should be given the ATFE Biennial group rate of $144 per night.

To get to the St. Paul Hotel from the airport, you have options. Arrive at the Lindbergh terminal (#1) and walk to baggage on street level, down one floor. You can ask directions at the information booth or go down one more level, underneath the road. Continue straight ahead until you reach the far end and go upstairs to the ground level. There you will find taxis and buses. If you land at the Humphrey terminal, take the tram first to the Lindbergh terminal, then find the #54 bus, as above.

The #54 bus will take you directly to the hotel and the fare is between $0.75  and $2.25. You will need to lift your luggage up 3 – 4 steps and have the correct fare. The ride takes about 20 minutes. Get off at the Ordway stop or ask the driver to tell you when you reach the St. Paul Hotel. The stop is across the street from the hotel entrance, next to Rice Park.

There are also pre-arranged taxis (Uber) and a light rail system. Take the green line, not the blue.

The hotel offers transportation to the airport at the end of our stay. Transportation requests are handled by the concierge. Guests can also request the concierge to schedule a taxi for them the night before their flight if they have a very early flight. Here is the price chart for the hotel’s van transportation to the airport:

Number of Guests Cost for Transportation
1 to 2 Guests $25
3 Guests $30
4 Guests $40
5 Guests $50
6 Guests $60
7 to 11 Guests $70

There is a huge variety of restaurant options near the Saint Paul Hotel.  Click on the link below to find 4 pages within walking distance. Our local tipster tells us that $$$ means fine dining, $$ means good quality; $ means so-so.

161117 Restaurants near The Saint Paul Hotel